The Monthly Species: June

Hello friends! So it is the end of June, once again I’m astounded that we are now half way through the year. But! Today we are talking about a mushroom. Fungi aren’t my favourite topic of conversation but I couldn’t resist because this one is so so cool. It’s sometimes referred to as Lion’s mane or bear’s head tooth fungus. It is Hericium americanum! 

Image result

Scientific Classification:

Kingdom: Fungi
Division: Basidiomycota
Class: Agaricomycetes
Order: Russulales
Family: Hericiaceae
Genus: Hericium
Species: H. americanum

Size: The fruiting body (the fleshy bit) can grow from about 15-30cm big. That in the range of mushrooms is big!

Diet: It lives off of decaying broad-leaved trees. It is thought that this may be init ally a parasitic fungus.

Distribution: It is found as the name might suggest in america. Specifically in North East america.
Hericium americanum, picture by Josh DotyReproduction: Fungus reproduce with spores which can be many different colours. This fungus has a white spore print.

Conservation: These fungi are quite common in the states however they are a prized find. They are an edible fungi and can be quite expensive because of how big they are!

The Coolest Thing Ever About This Species:

The shape of the fruiting body is simply stunning. The ice crystal shapes when combined with many fruiting bodies can look like a frozen waterfall!

ThatBiologist Everywhere!

Twitter

Facebook

Instagram

The Monthly Species: March

March has come and gone and here’s this months species. They are my favourite species from this particular group so I had to include them this year. Its the Sumatran orangutan!

Sumatran Orangutan

Scientific Classification:

Scientific Name : Pongo abelii

Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Mammalia

Order: Primates

Family: Hominidae

Genus: Pongo

Size: 

Male orangutans grow to about 1.4m and weigh around 90kg. The females are smaller.

Diet:

Orangutans have a diet consisting of five categories:

  • Fruits
  • Insects
  • Leaf material
  • Bark
  • Other miscellaneous items

They find water from natural bowls created in the trees but have also been known to drink the water from the hair on their arms when rainfall is heavy.

Life Expectancy:

Orangutan species can live for decades. The oldest known orangutan lived until the age of 55.
Reproduction:

Male orangutans live mostly alone and female orangutans live with their offspring although it is suggested that sumatran orangutans have stronger ties than bornean orangutans.

Conservation:

There current population is about 7,300 individuals and they are considered to be critically endangered.  This is because of deforestation and also illegal animal trade. They are an endemic species coming only from Sumatra. There are 9 populations unfortunately only 7 are deemed viable for a gain in the population.

The Coolest Thing Ever About This Species:

You’ll rarely find sumatran orangutans on the ground. Female orangutans exclusively travel through the trees and the males rarely come too travel on the ground.

ThatBiologist Everywhere!

Twitter

Facebook

Instagram